A Chinese scientist predicted that the country will launch a manned mission to the moon by 2017.
China launched its second manned space trip this year. Two astronauts spent five days orbiting the earth in the Shenzhou VI capsule.
Scientist Ouyang Ziyuan told the Southern Metropolis News that China also plans to set up a telescope on the moon and to search for helium-3, an element that could become a source of fuel.
The United States recently announced plans to return to the moon by 2018.
Copyright 2005 by United Press International
Explore further: Bad weather delays SpaceX launch with 3-D printer